Britain & Ireland 1901-present

War and conflict, technology, illness and medicine and the battle for civil and national rights have all been key elements of the 20th century through to today, thus, all of those themes and many more are explored in this section. Underpinning many of these articles and included here are articles exploring pedagogical issues, managing knowledge and transferring knowledge. Read more

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  • The National Insurance Act 1911: three perspectives, one policy

    Article

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  • The Northern Ireland Question 1886-1986

    Article

    The nature of the rights of majorities and minorities is one of the most intractable of the issues raised by the Northern Ireland question, especially since much depends on definitions. Ulster Protestants are a majority in that province but a minority in both Ireland and the United Kingdom, while Catholics,...

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  • The Origins of the Second Great War

    Article

    This pamphlet provides a detailed account of  the events leading up to the outbreak of war in 1939, covering the various factors that played a role in the outbreak of war such as tension over Poland and the Spanish Civil War, as well as the nature and effect of diplomatic...

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  • The People's Pension

    Article

    The People's Pensions: From Liberal Social Reforms to the Welfare State Why did the British get pensions when they did? What part did the great social surveys (Booth and Rowntree) play? Was there something rotten at the heart of Empire? What part did fears of a Red Peril play? Was...

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  • The Reformed Electoral System in Great Britain, 1832-1914

    Article

    The struggle for parliamentary reform between 1830 and 1832 has long been regarded as one of the decisive battles of British political history. The Tories lamented that the passage of the Reform Bill meant the destruction of the constitution. Middle class Radicals welcomed the Reform Bill as the instrument that...

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  • The Second World War

    Article

    On 5 September 1939 the German Führer, Adolf Hitler, paid a surprise visit to the corps which was in the forefront of his army's ferocious assault upon Poland. As they passed the remains of a smashed Polish artillery regiment, the corps commander, General Guderian, astonished Hitler by telling him that...

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  • The great Liberal landslide: the 1906 General Election in perspective

    Article

    On 1 May 1997 the Conservative party suffered an electoral defeat so overwhelming that political commentators were left rummaging through the statistics of the previous two centuries to find anything similar. The Times concluded on 3 May that it was the party's worst performance since 1832, though 'The disaster suffered...

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  • Triumphs Show 144: Active learning to engage ‘challenging students'

    Article

    Active learning to engage and challenge ‘challenging students' Historical significance may have been the ‘forgotten element' in 2002 when Rob Phillips first offered us the acronym ‘GREAT', but it has been seized upon with enthusiasm by the history education community. Christine Counsell's now famous five ‘R's (remarkable, remembered, resonant, resulting...

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  • Triumphs Show 155: beyond trivial judgements of 'bias'

    Article

    Towards victory in that battle... 10A were nearly a term into their GCSE history course, working on an 1890-1918 British history ‘depth study'. They had already completed work on the Liberal welfare reforms and on the women's suffrage movement, and they had been practising a range of source evaluation approaches....

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  • Unpacking the suitcase and finding history

    Article

    Unpacking the suitcase and finding history: doing justice to the teaching of diverse histories in the classroom It has become a truism that Britain is a multi-cultural society yet, as Mohamud and Whitburn argue, there is still a great deal of thinking to be done by history teachers in accounting...

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  • Unsung Heroes: The British Merchant Navy WW2

    Multipage Article

    The British Merchant Navy was a term that applied to the employees of British shipping companies whose vessels ranged from the sleekest ocean liners to obsolete tramp steamers. Merchant seamen already included contingents of Black, Asian and Arab sailors and the British Merchant Fleet was swelled between 1939 and 1945...

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  • Using The Wipers Times to build an enquiry on the First World War

    Article

    Teaching ‘the lesson of satire': using The Wipers Times to build an enquiry on the First World War ‘Blackadder for real' is how the British journalist and broadcaster, Ian Hislop, characterised The Wipers Time, the newspaper published on the front line by members of the 12th Battalion Sherwood, and recently brought...

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  • VE Day 75: free home learning resource

    5th May 2020

    Lots of organisations in the UK had exciting plans to commemorate the 75th anniversary of VE Day but unfortunately many of them will not now go ahead because of the Covid-19 situation. However, that doesn’t mean that young people can’t begin to understand why the first May bank holiday has...

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  • Votes for Women in Britain 1867-1928

    Article

    This classic pamphlet takes you through the Votes for Women in Britain movement from its origins to its eventual success, following the case for women's suffrage presented, tactics and strategies, the anti-suffragist argument, party political complications, international perspectives, the Pankhursts and militancy, the revival of non-militant suffragism, the impact of...

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  • WWI and the flu pandemic

    Article

    In our continuing Aspects of War series Hugh Gault reveals that the flu pandemic, which began during the First World War, presented another danger that challenged people’s lives and relationships. Wounded in the neck on the first day of the battle of the Somme, 1 July 1916, Arthur Conan Doyle’s son Kingsley...

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  • We Also Served: British Asian Veterans of WW2

    Multipage Article

    In search of the story of British Asian Veterans of World War Two.‘We also served' is a moving short film, which follows pupils from Beardwood and St Bede's high schools as they research why the contribution of these soldiers is not more widely recognised.

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  • Why does anyone do anything? Attempts to improve agentive explanations with Year 12

    Article

    In this article Sophie Harley-McKeown identifies and addresses her Year 12 students’ blind spot over agentive explanation. Noticing that the examination board to which she teaches uses ‘motivations’ rather than ‘aims’ prompted her to consider whether her students really knew what that meant. Finding that her students’ causal explanations tended...

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  • Women, War and Revolution

    Article

    On the surface, the period 1914 to 1945 seems to have encompassed massive changes in the position of women in Europe, in response to the demands of war and revolution. Yet historians have questioned the extent of the transformation, since the acquisition of the vote, as well as improvements in...

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  • World War 2 Letters

    Article

    Lt. Richard (Dick) Kelner Williams volunteered for the Dorset Regiment in June 1940.  He trained in Wiltshire with the 6th and 70th Dorsets in 1940 and 41.  After a period in the Intelligence Section of the Dorsets he volunteered for the 1st Air Landing Squadron and the 43rd Reconnaissance Regiment before his commission...

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  • Writing the First World War - Podcasts

    Multipage Article

    The Writing the First World War event in partnership with the English Association and the British Library took place at the British Library in London on April 14th. Over 80 teachers attended a wonderful day of stimulating professional development which was kicked off by a thought provoking take on how...

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